Property investors pour £5bn into central London offices

Joanna Bourke
International property investors are attracted to high office rents in London: PA

Investors ploughed more than £5 billion into central London offices in the second quarter, recovering from a sluggish start to the year, a new report revealed on Tuesday.

The £5.3 billion spent on buildings, including Singapore’s Ho Bee Land paying £650 million for Ropemaker Place, was more than double what was forked out in the prior quarter, and 28% higher than a year earlier.

Other deals in the period included British Land and Singaporean wealth fund GIC selling UBS’s home at 5 Broadgate to Hong Kong firm CK Asset Holdings for £1 billion.

Property agent JLL’s data pointed to the City being more popular than the West End.

Overseas buyers, including from Asia, accounted for over three quarters of the purchases.

International investors are attracted to London offices because of low vacancy rates and high rents.

JLL’s Julian Sandbach predicted steady buyer demand for the rest of the year.

However, he warned: “The concerns surrounding the political turbulence around the Brexit negotiations has the potential to affect the volume levels of 2018.”